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HTML & CSS: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition (Complete Reference Series) [Paperback]

Thomas A. Powell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
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Book Description

22 Nov 2009 0071496297 978-0071496292 5

The Definitive Guide to HTML & CSS--Fully Updated

Written by a Web development expert, the fifth edition of this trusted resource has been thoroughly revised and reorganized to address HTML5, the revolutionary new Web standard. The book covers all the elements supported in today's Web browsers--from the standard (X)HTML tags to the archaic and proprietary tags that may be encountered.

HTML & CSS: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition contains full details on CSS 2.1 as well as every proprietary and emerging CSS3 property currently supported. Annotated examples of correct markup and style show you how to use all of these technologies to build impressive Web pages. Helpful appendixes cover the syntax of character entities, fonts, colors, and URLs. This comprehensive reference is an essential tool for professional Web developers.

  • Master transitional HTML 4.01 and XHTML 1.0 markup
  • Write emerging standards-based markup with HTML5
  • Enhance presentation with Cascading Style Sheets (CSS1 and CSS 2.1)
  • Learn proprietary and emerging CSS3 features
  • Learn how to read (X)HTML document type definitions (DTDs)
  • Apply everything in an open standards-focused fashion

Thomas A. Powell is president of PINT, Inc. (pint.com), a nationally recognized Web agency. He developed the Web Publishing Certificate program for the University of California, San Diego Extension and is an instructor for the Computer Science Department at UCSD. He is the author of the previous bestselling editions of this book and Ajax: The Complete Reference, and co-author of JavaScript: The Complete Reference.


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HTML & CSS: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition (Complete Reference Series) + HTML & CSS: Design and Build Web Sites + Learning PHP, MySQL, JavaScript, and CSS: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Dynamic Websites
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Product details

  • Paperback: 864 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne; 5 edition (22 Nov 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071496297
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071496292
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 18.5 x 4.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 409,368 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Thomas A. Powell is president of PINT, Inc., a Web development and design firm. He developed the Web Publishing Certificate program for UCSD Extension and is an instructor for the Computer Science Department at UCSD. He is the author of the previous bestselling editions of this book and Ajax: The Complete Reference.


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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
The content in this book is OK, probably worth three to four stars, but as other reviews have noted, it's incredibly frustrating to try and use as a reference.

There are 294 pages for the HTML tag reference, if you open the book anywhere within this reference section the left and right page headers have the text "Part I: Core Markup" and "Chapter 2: HTML and XHTML Element Reference" respectively, on every single page! The page footers in this section are completely empty. This means that to find the tag you are looking for, you either have to go to the index (which is comprehensive) or open a page at random, skim that page until you find a tag, then estimate how many pages away the tag you are interested in is and then repeat. Even finding a tag on a page is made unnecessarily difficult by highlighting it only with a bold typeface this is used extensively throughout the pages for notes and subheadings.

Simply including within the header that tag that is under discussion could have made this book a much more valuable resource. However even with this change the book would still have problems. There seems to have been a laziness in the planning of this book, with some material introduced in an unpedagogical order.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An ultimate (X)HTML & CSS reference 17 July 2010
By A. Kwabula VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Depending on what you want to use the book for, this book will make you extremely happy or very sad! If you are a beginner then, you need to get yourself one of those books that assumes no prior coding knowledge on your part. It does not do a good job of holding you by the hand in your learning of (X)HTML from scratch! However if you are an intermediate or an Advanced HTML coder or just comfortable with the language, then this book is heaven-sent. It describes all (X)HTML and CSS elements in sufficient detail as well as other related things e.g you will not need to traverse the internet for information on MIME types, Doc types etc. It's like having a complete reference on your table, but hold on, is this statement not redundant? Well it is because the book actually says it's a Reference and it does JUST that. However, it's not like a dictionary where words are merely listed with short description. The book is exhaustive in it's explanations of the elements. So you will find detailed explanations of DIVS and SPANS with adquate code snippets complete with doc types,that helps show you the results in a browser window, the code is available on the supporting website.

The style is perfect in that you are given all possible values of an attribute. For instance, the CSS positioning element is presented the way it should be written (correct syntax)with all the semi colons and curly brackets in the right places and ALL posible values, separated by the pipe keybord character, so if you are unsure of the correct syntacx of an element while you are coding, you can quickly find out what values are possible or available for a particular element.

There is as much XHTML and CSS 1.0, 2.0, 2.1 as there are HTML 5 and CSS 3!
Read more ›
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4.0 out of 5 stars Nice writen 6 Nov 2011
Format:Paperback
The book is ok for intermediate or pros, but not very comfortable for begginers. So if you are new to html and css avoid this one
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book 19 Jan 2011
Format:Paperback
I bought this book a few years ago, and have just started using it for the first time. I wanted to post a review, when I realised that the book has been updated in the meantime to a fifth edition. This review applies to the fourth edition.

I found this to be a very readable and complete text book. It explains HTML and CSS very well. The edition I have also explains how to use forms and other interactive aspects involving a web server. Looking at the table of contents of the newer edition, it seems that these were removed with the rewrite. Not sure why, because I also found this to be an important aspect of web programming.
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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Good, The Bad and The Ugly 3 Nov 2010
By SoftEdition - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
The GOOD: The 'notes' section of each entry provides very useful information, reflecting the author's expertise.
The BAD: This is a very difficult book to navigate - to find what you are looking for. Have the designers of this book heard of <h1> or <h2>? How about color? Or something more than "PART I" along the edges? I found I have to go to the index almost every time. You should hold this book in your hand and see the inside before buying it to decide if navigation will be an issue for you.
THE UGLY: The lists of 'Attributes' and 'Events' make the book very bulky, without much use for me. This would be OK on an online reference, but in print form, it does not seem as usable.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent reference work. 23 Oct 2010
By tachi1 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am relatively new to web page implementation (I hesitate to call my current level of competency "web design.") This book, is not meant as an instructional book but is an excellent reference book. I know what I want to accomplish, but I don't know what the correct term or syntax is to give that instruction to the browser in either HTML or CSS "language." It doesn't go into programs, such as Dreamweaver. It probably assumes you are writing code in a text editor, which I'm not. I do use Dreamweaver and have other reference books to explain the program specifics. I use this book as a supplement that saves me a lot of hunting around in drop-down menus or entering keywords in the help menu.

When I get stumped as I plod along, I simply refer to the super-extensive table of contents or, failing that, the index or one of the many appendixes. I find an alphabetical list of elements, their meaning, and a page reference for further information. The exact same list is available for all CSS selectors. In the text section, the syntax is demonstrated, the values are explained, and the term is defined. Simpler terms have shorter explanations; longer and more complex terms have longer and more detailed explanations. (Look in the Amazon "Look Inside" option for this title. Go, page by page, over the index and table of contents and you'll see what I mean. This was what convinced me to get the book in the first place.)

Yes, there are pages of text explaining web standards, general and specific rules for HTML, XHTML, and CSS, the peculiarities of browsers, markup language and many other topics. But these are also found in other books. The absolute strength of this reference is the clear and logical presentation of the terms that we need to invoke in order for a browser to understand our intentions. For this to happen, it helps if we know how to write what we want and the correct way to write it.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent reference and guide 22 Jun 2010
By Paul Olson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is my first experience with "The Complete Reference" series, and I am very impressed. I am new to html and css, and this book provides a fine introduction to both. The book has a nearly perfect balance of teaching content and reference. I read enough information to learn the basic syntax, and saw many examples of usage. Then, the reference starts; you know how to use them, here are all of the options - go for it! Now when I need to know how to do something, say positioning in css, I just look at the options, decide what I need, and test it. It really is that simple. The html and css sections are separate, but both are explained in the same format. Now that I have a basic understanding of these topics, and a great reference, I am free to move on to more advanced topics like Javascript and MySQL.

This is also the first book that I have seen that includes HTML5 and CSS3 coverage (all of the others are currently pre-order only). The coverage lists everything, but only goes into detail on the tags that are most likely to be supported, or are already supported. Since we are a couple of years away from seeing the new standards adopted, this coverage seems appropriate.

This is the type of book that I can really learn from quickly, and I hope I find more that are this good for other subjects.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Reference - Not a How-To Book 27 Nov 2010
By Cherrymoon - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I purchased this book as part of a requirement for an HTML/CSS class I was taking for school. I had no prior HTML/CSS knowledge prior to purchasing this book.

I gave this book five stars because it is an excellent reference for HTML/CSS, which is the intention of the book. It is full of great detailed information that would be helpful in creating great looking websites. I cannot stress enough how much detail is in this book.

However, I personally would not recommend this book to someone who is trying to learn HTML/CSS. It is not a how-to book and I found myself looking at other resources a majority of the time in the learning process. I believe this book is geared more towards people who already have a good basic knowledge of HTML/CSS and are looking for additional ways to spice up your website. For a beginner, I believe this book was a little too overwhelming.

Overall, an excellent book for reference purposes. It's a book that you will probably be utilizing after you have learned HTML/CSS. If you are looking for a book to walk you through how to create a great looking website, this is not it.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good reference book, also covering CSS3 & HTML5 4 Jun 2010
By peter at scandinavianbooks.com - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is a comprehensive reference which covers all versions of HTML and CSS, including HTML5 and CSS3. It is written by a Web development expert who has participated in the development of the new standards, and who is very knowledgeable. I was very impressed by this book, which I think currently is the most comprehensive, complete and up to date reference book for CSS and HTML available. The book is an outstanding go-to guide for both for beginners and professional Web developers as it is fully updated for the latest CSS and XHTML standards and provides clear and concise examples.

The author, Thomas A. Powell, is president of PINT, Inc. [...], a nationally recognized Web agency. He developed the Web Publishing Certificate program for the University of California, San Diego Extension and is an instructor for the Computer Science Department at UCSD. He is also the author of the previous bestselling editions of this book and Ajax: The Complete Reference, and co-author of JavaScript: The Complete Reference. This broad expertise and background has clearly been important in the writing of HTML & CSS: The Complete Reference.

This excellent book covers all the elements supported in today's Web browsers-from the standard (X)HTML tags to the archaic and proprietary tags that may be encountered. HTML & CSS: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition contains full details on CSS 2.1 as well as every proprietary and emerging CSS3 property currently supported. I was positively surprised by the width of the coverage of CSS3. It also has good annotated examples of correct markup and style which show you how to use all of these technologies to build impressive Web pages.

Also, CSS and XHTML: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition covers the newest browser versions including Firefox 3, Internet Explorer 8, Safari and Opera, and contains much updated information about the browser and cross-browser compatibility of the various HTML and CSS elements. In addition, helpful appendixes cover the syntax of character entities, fonts, colors, and URLs.

I was very favorably impressed by this book. It is well written and well organized, and even though it is has more than 800 pages, very little space is wasted. CSS and XHTML: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition also contains good examples of useful Java. Overall the book is very up to date and so comprehensive that I think it will be useful for a long time, even though things change relatively fast as far as CSS and HTML is concerned. If you, like me, like to have a good reference book that is well organized, contains information on browser implementation and even some good examples, this is a very good choice which I strongly recommend!
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